Kari Grohn's Home Page - Japan - Nikko
Shinkyo Bridge, Nikko
the town of Nikko and its main shrines there is a red lacquered bridge
spanning across the Daiya River. The sacred bridgefs (Shinkyo) simple
elegance contrasts with the misty and untamed river and the evergreen
hills. The Shinkyo was originally built in 1636 for the exclusive use of
the Shogun and his emissaries.
Nikko has been revered as a holy ground since the Buddhist Saint Shodo Shonin (735-817) arrived at its wild streams. When Shodo was unable to cross a river he prayed on his knees and hence met a dreadful beast carrying two snakes. The being was the water god who tossed the red and blue snakes toward the priest. Then the serpents grew wild sedges forming a rainbow bridge across the chasm.
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